Conservation and Sporting Organizations Call for Passage of the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act

November 30, 2022

The Honorable Chuck Schumer
Majority Leader
United States Senate
The Honorable Mitch McConnell
Minority Leader
United States Senate
The Honorable Nancy Pelosi
Speaker of the House
United States House of Representatives
The Honorable Kevin McCarthy
Minority Leader
United States House of Representatives

Dear Majority Leader Schumer, Minority Leader McConnell, Speaker Pelosi, and Minority Leader McCarthy,

On behalf of the millions of hunters, anglers, recreational target shooters, boaters, professional scientists, and outdoor enthusiasts our organizations represent, we write to strongly urge immediate passage of the bipartisan Recovering America’s Wildlife Act (H.R. 2773/S. 2372), including as part of a potential comprehensive government funding bill.

For nearly a century, America’s sportsmen and women have been our nation’s leading conservationists and have maintained unmatched forethought to the health of our nation’s fish, wildlife, and other natural resources. Through the enactment of the Pittman-Robertson Act of 1937 and Dingell-Johnson Act of 1950, the two most important fish and wildlife conservation programs in the country, sportsmen and women have continuously led the way for conservation. These programs, which are funded on the backs of the very industries and individuals we represent, generated approximately $1.5 billion for state-based funding in FY22. It is through Pittman-Robertson and Dingell-Johnson that iconic species like elk, wild turkey, white-tailed deer, striped bass, and waterfowl that were once on the brink, are now thriving.

Unfortunately, today, we face a new wildlife crisis; one in which the magnitude of the solution must match the magnitude of the challenge. Conservation efforts are at a critical point, with more than one-third of American species at-risk and in need of proactive recovery. State Wildlife Action Plans, developed with the best available science in collaboration with federal, local and tribal agencies, have collectively identified more than 12,000 “Species of Greatest Conservation Need”. These plans include species cherished by many of us such as Northern bobwhite quail, monarch butterflies, artic graying, brook trout, big horn sheep, songbirds, many waterfowl species, and nearly 12,000 other fish and wildlife identified as Species of Greatest Conservation Need. That is why we write today urging passage of the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act.

H.R. 2773/S. 2372 would provide the necessary funding to implement the congressionally mandated, but severely underfunded, State Wildlife Action Plans, as well as critical Tribal and Territorial wildlife conservation programs, conserving wildlife populations before they become threatened or endangered, while helping to recover those that already are. By ensuring passage of the Recovering America’s Wildlife Act, this Congress will ensure that our fish, wildlife and outdoor recreation traditions and their associated national economic benefits will endure for the benefit of future generations. The Recovering America’s Wildlife Act represents an historic opportunity to simultaneously benefit wildlife, conservation, sportsmen and women, the economy and taxpayers.

Earlier this year, Recovering America’s Wildlife Act received a successful, bipartisan vote to pass the House in June, where it has the support of 194 bipartisan cosponsors. In the Senate, S. 2372 has the support of 42 bipartisan cosponsors, and passed the Environment and Public Works Committee on a strong bipartisan vote of 15-5. The House floor vote and the Senate Committee vote demonstrate the wide-spread support for H.R. 2773/S. 2372. Given the robust showing of support in both chambers and the urgency of the biodiversity crisis, now is the time to pass Recovering America’s Wildlife Act.

The collaborative, non-regulatory approach of this bill will empower conservation for the full diversity of American’s wildlife as well as critical natural resources. Failure to fund these conservation efforts will not only endanger many more at-risk species, but threaten the local, state, and federal economies bolstered by the $862 billion outdoor industry, which employs 4.5 million Americans.

We urge you to pass this high priority legislation for fish, wildlife, and sportsmen and sportswomen before the 117th Congress adjourns. We thank you for your support for conservation.


American Catfishing Association
American Fisheries Society
American Sportfishing Association
American Woodcock Society
Archery Trade Association
Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies
Backcountry Hunters & Anglers
Bass Anglers Sportsman Society (B.A.S.S.)
Bear Trust International
Bonefish & Tarpon Trust
Boone and Crockett Club
California Waterfowl Association
Camp Fire Club of America
Catch-A-Dream Foundation
Coastal Conservation Association
Congressional Sportsmen’s Foundation
Council to Advance Hunting and the Shooting Sports
Dallas Safari Club
Delta Waterfowl
Ducks Unlimited
Guy Harvey Ocean Foundation
Houston Safari Club
International Game Fish Association
Izaak Walton League of America
Major League Fishing
Marine Retailers Association of the Americas
Masters of Foxhounds Association
Mule Deer Foundation
National Association of Forest Service Retirees
National Bobwhite & Grassland Initiative
National Deer Association
National Professional Anglers Association
National Shooting Sports Foundation
National Wild Turkey Federation
National Wildlife Federation
North American Falconers Association
North American Grouse Partnership
Orion: The Hunter’s Institute
Pheasants Forever
Pope & Young Club Quail Forever
Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation
Ruffed Grouse Society
Safari Club International
Sportsmen’s Alliance
Texas Wildlife Association
The Bass Federation
The Conservation Fund
The Walleye Federation
The Wildlife Society
Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership
Trout Unlimited
Whitetails Unlimited
Wild Sheep Foundation
Wildlife Forever
Wildlife Management Institute
Wildlife Mississippi